Suruj: What price on a life lost?
LOCAL Government and Works Minister, Suruj Rambachan, yesterday in his contribution to the Dog Control Bill 2013, recalled the victims of dog attacks, and questioned what price can be placed on those who have lost their lives.
“Because what price can you place on a life lost? What price can you place on a limb lost? On the disfiguration of a person? On pain, on trauma? Experienced not just by the person, but by the relatives,” he said.
The Dog Control Bill specifically targets owners of the Pitbull, Japanese Tosa and Fila Brasilero—to be known as Class A dogs.
According to the bill you could receive a $200,000 fine and be sentenced to ten years in jail, and if your dog kills someone, and if your dogs injures someone, five years imprisonment, and a $100,000 fine.
Rambachan in his contribution in Parliament noted that a lot of debate was on the severity of the fines, but no price could be paid for the victims of these attacks, and those left behind.
He referred to the “motherless children” of security guard Denise Rackal from Chaguanas, who was killed by seven pitbulls in May, 2011.
He cited other cases of people being attacked by pitbulls, including three-year-old Natalia Jones, permanently disfigured after a pitbull attack in Marabella in April, 2009.
“This is a child who has to grow up and face society with those scars,” he stressed.
He noted that in December, 2012 22 year-old Arima resident, Karen Lara, was hospitalised after she was attacked by two pitbulls, and in September, 2011 in Fyzabad when 15-year-old schoolgirl Chrishel Tannis was bitten by two pitbulls. Tannis was rescued by a neighbour, who beat the dogs with a piece of wood.
“Can you imagine going through that trauma? Can you imagine having to live with that trauma for your life? Can you imagine lying on the ground, and a dog is coming at your throat, and all you can do is put your hands to try to save yourself like that?” he asked rhetorically.
Rambachan said that almost every month somebody was attacked by a dangerous dog. He also questioned what price could be paid for a person living daily in a community with a dangerous dog that is not properly secured.